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Days Out

12 Family-Friendly Theme Parks To Visit This Summer

Theme parks are the best post-lockdown treat for kids of all ages. With parks reopening their doors this month and everyone wanting to blow off steam, the tickets are selling out quick! I love that so many of the big theme parks have super-cool rides and play areas that cater to younger kids too. I’ve picked out the best theme parks that offer a good selection of activities for the little ones, as well as brilliant family activities and attractions. Do let me know if I’ve missed one that you and your family absolutely love.

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Peppa Pig World, Paulton’s Park

All toddlers seem to be mad about Peppa Pig. So, a meet-and-greet, along with a chance to immerse themselves in the world of their favourite character, will be a dream day out. Paulton’s Park has plenty of family rides, water splash parks, as well as birds and animals. It’s really worth booking accommodation near the park and making it a short break out of it.

Location: New Forest, Hampshire

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The Gruffalo, Chessington

Ever since the Gruffalo moved into Chessington, the park has been a delight for young children. While the Lazy River ride is the main attraction, Chessington also has short-break options with the chance to stay in a hotel room decked out in all things The Gruffalo. Spend a day in the theme park and a day in the zoo. New for this year, Chessington has unveiled The Rainforest – three new jungle-themed family-friendly rides.

Location: Chessington, Kingston upon Thames

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Angry Birds, Thorpe Park

Thorpe Park has some of the absolute best rides for adults but there’s a good balance of family fun too. Angry Birds Land is best for kids four years and above with the Angry Birds 4D experience, dodgems and Detonator, the ride with a birds-eye-view. The park also has rapids, teacups and water rides.

Location: Chertsey, Surrey

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Duplo Valley, Legoland

Legoland is one of the best places for young kids and even I love walking through miniland looking at the miniature landmarks made of Lego! Duplo Valley is just perfect for toddlers (or Little Builders, as Legoland call them!) with its Dino Coaster, Playtown and theatre. Under 3’s can enjoy Playtown and Splash Safari. Don’t forget to get their L-Drivers license in Lego city.

Location: Windsor

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CBeebies, Alton Towers

I’m not sure anyone ever grows out of Alton Towers. There was so much for the little ones to do before CBeebies Land and that has also been a fantastic addition to the park. Join Peter Rabbit, In The Night Garden, Teletubbies and the rest of the CBeebies gang your kids have fallen in love with. Don’t forget to book a day in the water park too!

Location: Alton, Stoke-on-Trent

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Thomas Land, Drayton Manor

Full steam ahead to Drayton Manor! Thomas Land goes all out for kids: it has 25 rides and attractions! All of the Thomas and Friends characters come to life here through brilliant rides, including Toby’s Tram Express, Cranky’s Drop and Harold’s Helicopter Tour. I recommend a day in the zoo and a day in the theme park as neither can be rushed. To read more about my trip there, click here.

Location: Drayton Bassett, Staffordshire

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Neverland, Oakwood Theme Park

Rollercoasters, rides and attractions for all ages are what you’ll find at Wales’ biggest theme park. Kids will love Neverland for an adventure with Peter Pan, Tinkerbell and the Lost Boys. My favourite place is Dahland where all the best Roald Dahl characters come to life.

Location: Pembrokeshire, Wales

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Nickelodeon Land, Blackpool Pleasure Beach

Join Spongebob, The Backyardigans, PAW Patrol and other characters from Team Nick at Blackpool Pleasure Beach – a classic theme park day out if you’re based in the North of the UK. I also love a visit to Ripley’s Believe It or Not which will have plenty of surprises for everyone.  


Location: Blackpool, Lancashire 

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Angry Birds Activity Park, Lightwater Valley

Suited for children from one year old, Lightwater Valley is an amazing place for a family adventure. It’s also the home to the Angry Birds Activity Park. Your young adrenaline junkie will be thrilled to ride the Twister, the Eagles Claw and the Falls of Terror. With 40 rides to choose from, they’ll be something for everyone to enjoy. 


Location: Ripon, North Yorkshire 

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Heart Kid’s Zone, Pleasurewood Hills

Pleasurewood has a good mix of entertainment and attractions, including sea lion and parrot shows. As for rides, enjoy the classics, including dodgems, carousel, wave swinger and a couple of roller coasters. The kids can go for the spin in the teacups and sail the seas on the mini pirate ship in Heart Kid’s Zone. 

Location: Lowestoft, East Anglia

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You might also like: Nine Day Trips From London

Multiple locations

Gulliver’s World

This is one of the oldest theme parks I can think of (it’s over 40 years old!) and now they have four parks and another one opening soon. Don’t expect any big rides though, as these parks are specially designed for those under 12. I’m only familiar with the Matlock Bath Park which is built into a hillside in the beautiful Peak District – take the chair lift ride for the best views. The park has something for everyone, whether your little one loves princesses, dinosaurs, pirates or diggers!

Location: Warrington, Milton Keynes x 2, Matlock Bath, Rother Valley (opens 2020)

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Diggerland is much bigger now than I remember it and it’s truly a digger-themed experience for the whole family. For the kids, there’s the digger train, knocking down skittles and hunting for treasure on a digger, go-karts, mini tractors and land-rovers. For adults, get behind the gears of an actual digger.

Location: Kent, Devon, Durham and Yorkshire

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You might also like: Luxury Staycations The Whole Family Will Absolutely Love

Days Out

Al Fresco Inspiration: 10 Things Your Family Picnic Is Missing

One of the best things you can do in this gorgeous weather is pack up a picnic and venture out into the countryside… or the beach or the local park! Picnics are a brilliant family activity because they don’t take lots of planning but sometimes I love to indulge in a few things to make the day out extra special.

I wrote a post two years ago which is more geared for picnics with younger children that you might also like to have a gander at!

My Picnic Checklist 

Rainbow picnic wine glasses, M&S 


Plastic glasses (and wine) are essential. I love these M&S ones with a hint of rainbow. They’re really lightweight too so will not weigh down your picnic basket too much.

Wool picnic blanket – rainbow, Lala & Bee


Keeping with the rainbow theme, this gorgeous wool picnic blanket is big enough for the whole family to sit on. The wool is comfy to sit on, while the waterproof backing is super practical if the ground is a little damp. 

Oil cloth, Sarah K

£16.25 per half metre

Greasy fingers always make an appearance at picnics, so rather than having the little ones wipe them on your blanket, invest in an oil tablecloth. If you’re fortunate enough to find a spot with picnic benches, this definitely comes in handy. 

Acrylic tableware, The Summer House 

From £12

The Summer House tableware collection is just divine. The tumblers are my first pick but if I were going all out or throwing a garden party, I’m sure I’d be picking up the flutes, jugs and salad bowls too. 

Lidded picnic basket with check lining, Brambly Cottage

£31 (was £48)

Traditional picnic baskets can often be quite heavy but this wicker and cotton canvas one isn’t too bulky. It’s perfect for packing with delicious treats. 

Beach cooler bag, Sunny Life 


There is nothing worse than warm sausage rolls… except for maybe a G&T without ice. Keep everything chilled with this Sunny Life cooler bag.

Marlo Wine

From £11.50

Marlo Wine is my new go-to for wine. I love that you can order just one bottle and there isn’t an overwhelming range to choose from: Marlo has selected the best of the best, ranging from £11.50 to £525.00. 

Smoked goods, Brown and Forest 

Brown and Forest wholesale to the likes of Hawksmoor and Fortnum and Mason and if it receives their stamp of approval, it’s bound to be top-notch. Choose from smoked meats, smoked fish, cheeses, hampers and much more. 

British made cheeses,Village Maid Cheese Ltd 

From £5

It wouldn’t be a proper picnic without a good selection of cheeses and Village Maid Cheese is my favourite for artisan cheeses. 

Mail order cakes, The Hobo

From £20

The Hobo are doing all sorts of exciting things with their pop-up coffee shop/cocktail and canape bar. If you need catering give them a call. I’m just delighted you can now order their delicious triple chocolate brownies online! 

Days Out

6 Destination ‘Farm Shops’ From London For All The Family

Whenever we are staying with family in Suffolk, I always try to squeeze in a visit to Wyken Vineyards. It has been called the ‘Daylesford of East Anglia’ and rightly so. Not only does it have an acclaimed restaurant, upmarket gift shop and a beautiful garden to peruse, there are are alpacas, sheep and peacocks to give your children their farm fix!


I started thinking about places similar to this close to London.  It is easy to find theme parks or straightforward farms (see my previous post on 6 Farms Close to London)  within throwing distance of London, but a place to visit away from the humdrum of London that can satisfy every member of the family (with a bit of shopping and top nosh for example) are few and far between.

The good thing about these ‘destination farm shops’ (that I am bracketing them them all under) is that, excuse the cliche, there really is something for everyone.

Whether it is being inspired by new interiors, stocking up your present draw, eating ‘farm to fork’ produce or getting some fresh air – I just think they are a great destination to go with a friend in the holidays or all the family at the weekend.



Priory Farm, Surrey 

Not only does Priory Fram have all the jazz mentioned above, it’s USP for me Discovery Walk. Meander through tunnels, peak into little houses and a try to conquer the sunflower maze – this is a wonderful walk (don’t take a push chair though!!!)



Cowdray Estate House, Midhurst, West Sussex

Not only farm shops and cafe’s – why not have a golf lesson on their famous course.  If it was all a bit too much excitement you could also extend your stay in one of their little cottages!



Gog Magog Farm Shop, Cambridge 

Not only does this place have a playbarn (son good winter destination too), it is famous for the Shack. Bring the great outdoors indoors, enjoy delicious food in an unusual and relaxed setting. Perfect after a dog walk!



Fox Holes Farm, Hertfordshire 

This is a great place for a rural day out near Hertford and if you are looking to amuse the little ones in half term and want something completely different what about the ‘sausage linking‘ workshop? You won’t find that in London!


After you have learnt to string sausages, tuck in to  Granny Smith’s high tea for two! So English!


Middle Farm, South Downs, Sussex 

Not only do they have a newly laid out ‘Hay Playbarn’ there are numerous ways to get involved with the animals. With entrance to the farm only £5 per person, you will be able to fill the day easily and also stock up your cupboards with a bit of shopping at the gift shop and take some plants back from the lovely nursery.



Trading Boundaries, Uckfield, East Sussex

This place is like no other I have visited! With a large courtyard full of boutique shops, there is a fab play area for the kids (with a vast area for the kids to run free) and a really lovely cafe / restaurant. They have a fantastic kids menu and also a Jazz Sunday Brunch if that takes your fancy!

They also sell furniture!



All of these places may seem like a hike, but they are all worth it once you get there!! Hopefully the kids will doze on the way back into London! I am going to visit a couple in half term, so if you want to see how we get on, head over to Instagram and click follow! 

Do you know of any other destinations from London? Please let me know as I would love to visit!

Also, if you are looking for some day other types of trips from London, you might find these 9 Day Trip Ideas helpful.

Have a lovely day xx

Activities Days Out Family Life Food

Review of Bubba Gump Shrimp Co

Restaurants that really welcome children? Few & far between. I am always on the hunt for fun, relaxed & reasonable restaurants to take the kiddies where we won’t be looked upon like we have taken a bunch of leprechaun’s into the restaurant. So when newly opened Bubba Gump Shrimp Co asked us to come and visit them, we were delighted to.

After arriving in the West End slightly early, we killed some time Lillywhites for old times sake (which I might add is still pretty cheap despite being in the centre of tourist mecca).  After that brief interlude of looking at junior cricket bats (I am outnumbered) we headed to the restaurant, where we found the neon lights of Bubba’s pretty easily.


It is a stone’s throw from Piccadilly tube, based in the classic Trocadero. Be warned there is a shop at the entrance though.  We say in advance ‘Just so you know, this is a treat in itself. We are not buying anything extra,’  which now seems to do the trick if they know ahead of time.

The restaurant is a tribute to the film ‘Forrest Gump’ and features a menu of comfort food from the American South that reflects the film’s setting in Alabama. Shrimp is of course the specialty but there’s something to delight everyone on the menu.

After an excitable wait downstairs, we were led upstairs past all the original memorabilia.


I especially liked all the words of wisdoms that were sporadically placed over the walls in amongst costume’s and prop displays.


We were given a booth opposite the a large TV that aired rolling repeats of all the Tom Hanks movies he had been in.


We had Forrest Gump which was fun.


First things first, we ordered drinks. Not usually one for cocktails – I entered the spirit of things and went for their Alabama Southern Punch. That definitely chilled me out!


We ordered their signature dishes such as ‘After The Storm – Bucket of Boat Trash’ and ‘Dumb Luck Coconut Shrimp’ which were vast and delicious.

The kids had the ‘Bus Bench Burger & Hubba Bubba Popcorn Shrimp which kept them quiet for a considerable amount of time.

For pudding, I ordered Chocolate Chip Cookie Sunday. It was basically the size of my face and I thought there is no way I will be able to eat it all… Will leave it your imagine whether I did or not! ha


The children’s pudding was pretty unbeatable. Move over Build a Bear, this was ‘Build Your Own Sundae!’  A trio of toppings and a mountain of ice cream.


We had a great time and will definitely head back for a special occasion. If you are looking for a fun place to take the family one weekend, I highly recommend Bubba’s.

Not only is it an education in deep South American history (!) it is relaxed – you want have to be shhhhing them every 5 seconds! (or is that just me!), easy to get to and pretty reasonable.

Make sure you book though as it is very popular!

Bubba Gump Shrimp Co 

13 Coventry Street, London W1D 7AB

0203 7 635 288

Activities Days Out

Topgolf : Golf For All

Whether you are into golf or not, Topgolf is something you have to try. It takes the traditional driving range and adds a ‘ten pin bowling’ like scoring system to it and the ability to order food and drinks from your booth.

There are 3 just outisde London – Chigwell, Watford & Surrey. We bombed down the A3 and headed to the Surrey Topgolf but depending where you are in London, all 3 are very accessable.


It was like being in the States (!) the service was impeccable and the staff were super friendly (and patient!) This summer they have a fantastic deal for the kids – Eat, Drink & Play.  Two games (40 balls) and food & drink from a snazzy menu for £10. (Adults £16) That’s a very reasonable way to entertain the children and they are also learning a new skill!


We went en famille and by the end of game, there was a mega improvement (apart from the 2 year old, who funnily enough, wasn’t too interested in playing but she did love watching the scores come up on the screens.)

The idea is that you score by hitting the ball into one of the circles. You activate your ball before you hit it and then your score comes up on screen. The further away the higher the score.


There is also coaching, junior camps and FOOT GOLF. No, I hadn’t heard of it either but it was brilliant.

After a yummy lunch of nachos, burgers and a caeser salad, we headed off to the golf course for a game. Basically, everyone has a football and there is a flag with a whole (for the football) and each hole is given a par (how many kicks they estimate it should take to complete the hole). As you can imagine it was a great success.


As we drove off, there were cries of ‘please can we come here again?’ And that was just my husband…. 🙂


Have you seen TLM Ultimate Directory?




Activities Days Out

9 Day Trips From London

So, you have your summer holiday booked but how do you fill the days in between? If you want to head to a farm within driving distance of London, have a look at a recent post I did on ‘Fun Farms‘ but for the more intrepid, I have compiled a few places that you may never have even heard of. Enjoy!

Pooh Corner Ashdown Forest, Hartfield, East Sussex

Grab a map from the shop and visit all places that are mentioned.  My favourite is the bridge for a game of Pooh Sticks. Make sure you read (reread)  the books so you are up to speed and then watch Winnie & friends come to life.

Fishing London Northolt, London

Book a 2 or 4 hour introduction lesson at one of their 6 lakes in West London. They don’t give a starting age but if you have a keeno, this would be a very novel thing to do. They also do parties!


Crockford Bridge & Farm Shop Weybridge, Surrey

Crockford Bridge Farm grows more than 20 fuits and veg on its 75 acre farm. All for the picking. There is also an ice cream parlour and garden centre in case they haven’t eaten enough strawberries. I am going to try and make my own jam if I pick enough!

Berkonscot Model Village Beaconsfield, Buckinghamshire

I have heard on many accounts that this is a wonderful day out. (It’s on my to do list…) It is the oldest model village in the UK and is a mini England in the 1930’s. Educational and fun.

Hatfield Park Farm Hatfield, Hertfordshire

Tractor rides. demos and Hungarian Wooly Pigs. If that isn’t enough to entice you, there are huge sandpits and a massive play area and the cafe looks qaint too.

Diggerland Medway, Kent

There are Diggerlands all over the UK now, but if you want to do a day trip from London, head to the one in Kent. The kids can ride on every type of farm transport possible and they even have a tractor themed roundabout. Possibly alot of little boys (don’t kill me) definition of heaven.

Bluebell Railway East Grinstead, Sussex

Take a ride through the beautiful countryside on an old fashion train. Stop for lunch and a peruse the gift shop… and then come back again! Not for the fidgety! (Speaking from experience!)

Chiselhurst Caves Chiselhurst, Kent

Not for the faint hearted, this fun filled 45 minute tour guides you through the caves carrying only a lamp for light. Wooooooo. The tour covers many aspects of the national curriculum including light & dark and the WW2.

Discovery Walk at Priory Farm Redhill, Surrey

A magical interractive walk through tunnels, across bridges, along planks & through little houses with lots of adventure obstacles along the way. The highlight is the sunflower maze and duck racing! There is also a brilliant cafe attached to a fenced in play area so you can actually switch off!


I hope this gives you some ideas. If you would prefer to drop them off at a camp, check out 9 Summer Holiday Camps.



Activities Days Out Places Services

London Cultural Trips For Kids

Clarendon Tutors offer a bespoke tutoring service in London. However, it isn’t another tutoring agency that matches child to tutor and leaves you on your way.  They understand a parents need for continuous feedback and they also maintain open communication with whichever schools the children attend, ensuring that they are working in co-operation rather than conflict.

‘The thing I loved about Clarendon was the constant support. The agencies I have used in the past have just sent us anonymous tutors and that’s been the end of it. Clarendon helped us through every step of getting ‘M’ into his school.’

The charming and knowledgeable founders, Henry and Orlando, are excellent at matching their highly experienced Oxbridge tutors with a pupil, being tutors themselves, and have a 100% track record of getting your child into the school of your choice.


What makes Clarendon Tutors really unique is their Cultural Trips. Consisting of 1 tutor to 1-2 children, the day out combines traditional learning with experiences such as visiting a museum and also a more active pursuit such as a tennis lesson or a round of crazy golf, for example. Whatever you require, they will endeavor to tailor the day for you and your child including picking them up and taking them home. The tutor also visit a few days before so that you are comfortable with who will be looking after your children for the day.

What’s Included

  • 9am pick up from home (or the train if your child is old enough to come into London for the day)
  • 1 hour of tutoring in the morning
  • An exhibition or museum such as Imperial, Natural or Design Museum
  • A healthy lunch
  • An Afternoon activity such as tennis, football, Go Ape, Putt In The Park
  • 1 hour tutoring
  • 5pm finish


Outside the Ai Wei Wei Exhibition at the RA




Ready for tennis

Ready for tennis at The Hurlingham Club

For international parents and children that are new to London, they are able to help you by showing them the British culture and system.  Whatever your requirements are, these are your guys.  With the gaping summer holiday looming, they will be able to take the children off your hands knowing they are being well looked after and educated in a fair few things too!

Tuition rates start at £50/hr. Day trips start from £200/day.

Drop them an email for more information and to ask any questions – / or give them a call anytime on 020 7206 2569


Activities Days Out Places

Clip ‘n Climb: Indoor Climbing Adventure

Clip n’ Climb does exactly what it says on the tin. You get clipped in to a harness and according to your age and experience are shown a wall in which is suitable to climb and then left to your own devices. The introduction made my 4 year old feel so at ease that he sailed up the wall – and came back down – with no problems, only to be eager to do it again and again until his hour had expired.

H going up!

H going up!

H coming down!

H coming down!

For the more intrepid there is a huge wall and vertical slide!


It is a genius idea set in a huge warehouse of the New Kings Road in Chelsea. It has been so successful, the owners are considering starting a snow dome for indoor skiing next door. Why hadn’t I tried Clip n’ Climb before? Because I didn’t fancy it – but now we are converts, I might even have my own party there!


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